Tuesday, November 19, 2019


I just completed a week of fall vacation. I attended Mass where I was and sat close to the back of the Church.

At the sign of peace, I extended my hand to someone near me to shake hands, a husband and wife couple. They smiled at me but did not extend their hands.

At first I though how rude of them. But I realized they may have been germaphobes, one of the best phobias there is. 

But it was still awkward.

Thank God I don't have to sit in the congregation very often because it is an eyeopener not only in terms of the sign of peace but the other things that go on, especially in the last few pews.

Can't tell you how many went to Holy Communion and did not return to their pew but escaped as soon as possible. At first I thought all those who were sitting around me must have been raptured and I was left behind!


newguy40 said...

Well, in the unfortunate event that I have to attend a NO Mass, I also don't shake hands. Nor do I walk across the aisle to do so, hug and kiss my wife and children, wave my arms in the air, slap my pal on the back, nor do I wave the "peace sign" to those 50 ft from me.
I have had the misfortune of attending NO Mass where the pastor walks off the sanctuary to shake hands with the first 3-4 rows and all that after already shaking hands with each member of the cloud of EMHC's and "choir".

It's too much.

John Nolan said...

Perhaps those who did not return to their place after receiving Communion were following the laudable custom of making their thanksgiving at a side altar, and perhaps lighting a candle and reciting the De Profundis for their deceased relatives.

Dan said...

Perhaps they sit in the LAST seats, so that they may be FIRST.

Anonymous said...

Bee here:

As to the people who leave church right after receiving Holy know it was Judas who left the Last Supper right after receiving the morsel of bread from Jesus.

Just sayin'. :-)

God bless.

rcg said...

Optimism?!?! Who are you and what did you do with John Nolan?!?

Robert Kumpel said...

Back in the 1990's I lived near a cathedral and I would attend Mass after work each day. It was a larger church building and the congregation was scattered throughout, so at the sign of peace, we would all take a quick look around and give a polite wave or nod to each other and the priest was able to get on with the Mass without the usual long interruption. I called it the "wave of peace." I have to admit, I liked it.

Gene said...

I always thought the sign of peace was silly and annoying.

TJM said...


Amen, the most annoying part of it is when a jumping-jolly priest runs off of the altar to pump everyone in sights hand. At the NO, I have never seen a priest deliver the kiss of peace in the traditional manner to those in the sanctuary. Perhaps if they did, the congregation would emulate that practice instead of the current one

Robert Kumpel said...

Gene, generally speaking, I agree that the entire thing IS silly and annoying, but that' only because when they switched to the Novus Ordo when I was a kid, the whole thing just seemed like a silly exercise in pandering. Since I was trying to be a "non-trouble-maker", I certainly never complained about it in those days and, by the time I was attending Mass at the cathedral, the quickness and non-intrusiveness of the nod/wave was a refreshing departure from the excessive "love-ins" I had to endure at other parishes.

Silly? Yes. Annoying? Definitely.

Are we stuck with it? Yup--for the time being.

Marc said...

Are we stuck with it?

You're only stuck with it if you go to the Novus Ordo service. You're doing it to yourself. I haven't encountered such nonsense in years because I no longer go to the Novus Ordo. Problem solved.

Anonymous said...

Marc, some of us only have access to the NO. No option in this neck of the woods.

Robert Kumel said...

Given where I live, not attending the Novus Ordo is not a realistic choice. I am happy for you that you have other options.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of germophobes.... I wish priests and EMHC would stop touching the (maybe dirty) hair of people who go up for the "Participation Trophy Blessing" at Communion time then reach into the ciborium to grab a Host. Please stop that!

Православный физик said...

Sounds normal to me, if I ever step foot in a Roman church, I generally bow, or give an acknowledgement if I'm the initiator, if someone extends their hands, I try to not be rude. But the sign of peace is an introverts worst nightmare :p

TJM said...


LOL: Participation Trophy Blessing, another left-wing lunacy! Feelings, whoa, whoa, whoa, feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelings

Marc said...

We were able to move halfway across the country so we would have "options." Before that, we drove a couple hours or more roundtrip to get to the traditional mass.

If we're traveling and there's no traditional mass available within an hour or so, we say the rosary and read the missal. Thankfully, that happens rarely.

My family does not go to the Novus Ordo. The Novus Ordo is never an option for us.